FMA Communications Inc.

Tim Heston

Senior Editor
FMA Communications Inc.
833 Featherstone Road
Rockford, IL 61107
Same building, new people, new business - TheFabricator.com

Same building, new people, new business

September 13, 2011

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A Tulsa, Okla., job shop launches just as the economy starts to recover. The shop moved into a facility that was previously home to another, now defunct fabricator. The building is old--but everything else is new.

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Knowing the grammar of metal fabrication - TheFabricator.com

Precision Sheet Metal Operator certification provides broad foundational knowledge

September 13, 2011

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Several employees at Metcam, an Atlanta-area fabricator, underwent a relatively new program--the Precision Sheet Metal Operator, or PSMO, certification from the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association. The certification requires in-depth knowledge of a range of fabrication processes--providing the foundation for a versatile, cross-trained, highly valuable employee.

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Aerospace manufacturer champions employee ownership - TheFabricator.com

Aerospace manufacturer champions employee ownership

September 13, 2011

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This California fabricator finds success with its employee stock ownership plan. The ESOP gives everyone a stake in the business. ESOPs go against conventional wisdom in retirement planning, where the financial gurus promote investment diversification. But for LeFiell employees, investing in the ESOP has paid off--big time.

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The job shop schedule: Always imperfect, ever adapting - TheFabricator.com

The job shop schedule: Always imperfect, ever adapting

September 9, 2011

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There's one constant about job shops specializing in high-mix, low-volume manufacturing: change. Changes happen continually, which means schedules must continually adapt. Today, software is allowing job shops to ensure the production schedule reflects reality and, most important, continually adapts.

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Manufacturing's Multiplier Effect - TheFabricator.com

Manufacturing's Multiplier Effect

September 9, 2011

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Sales at B&W Trailer Hitches dropped severely during the recession, but the fabricator had no mass layoffs. Instead, workers gave back to the community, fixing and repairing public parks, community centers, even employees’ homes. Judging by the company’s recent performance, such a strategy wasn’t just altruistic. It was good business.

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Metal fabricator asks what else customers need--and grows

September 2, 2011

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This Buffalo, N.Y., job shop is difficult to pigeonhole. It offers contract fabrication services, assembles complex material handling systems, and distributes certain products, including rooftop support systems. The company grew so diverse simply by asking what else their customers needed. In other words, managers followed the market.

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No weak link allowed - TheFabricator.com

No weak link allowed

September 2, 2011

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Holloway Houston Inc. uses waterjet cutting to fabricate critical linkages for its extreme testbed that's capable of exerting up to 5,000 tons of pulling force. Any weak link between the workpiece and testbed structure can render the pull test invalid--which is why waterjet cutting components to extremely tight tolerances is so important.

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Distributor, metal fabricator, metal finisher--wraparound service - TheFabricator.com

Distributor, metal fabricator, metal finisher--wraparound service

September 2, 2011

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This Atlanta area company is an extruded metal distributor, architectural metal fabricator, and metal finisher all rolled into one. Such vertical integration gives the company a leg up over the competition.

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Metal fabricator’s product launch proves profitable - TheFabricator.com

Metal fabricator’s product launch proves profitable

September 2, 2011

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A business doesn't have to be glamorous to be profitable. For Zeus metal Works, a Siler City, N.C., fabricator, heavy-duty cabinets, a necessity in many industries, have opened the door (so to speak) to new business opportunities.

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Job shop quotes competitively but fairly--not below cost - TheFabricator.com

Being fair and competitive

September 2, 2011

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Salem Metal Fabricators quotes a fair price, regardless of the economy, and has been able to maintain long-term customer relationships because of it.

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Metal fabricating with a sense of ownership

August 30, 2011

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I really like my job--but not in a corny sense. I don’t wake up and immediately whistle away in gleeful anticipation of the workday. Some days I feel I can’t write another word, while other days I type several pages before I realize that what I just wrote is either unintelligible or just plain...

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Avoiding a manufacturing traffic jam

August 22, 2011

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When do more cars travel on the highway, before or during rush hour?  It’s rush hour, right? Well, it depends on how you interpret the question. During rush hour, plenty of cars flood the highway at once, but they all take more time to get where they’re going. In fact, there’s a good chance...

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Metal fabrication goes back to school

August 16, 2011

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Last week I spoke with Harry Moser, chairman emeritus of GF AgieCharmilles LLC, the machine tool company. He will speak at the upcoming FABTECH expo in Chicago about his Reshoring Initiative. Moser has developed Total Cost of Ownership Estimator software that breaks down the costs and risks of...

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Debate spending, not debt

August 8, 2011

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When Standard & Poor’s officially downgraded the U.S. credit rating on Friday, several conversations ran through my mind. One was with Vivek Gupta, managing director at Texas ProFab, a Dallas-area fabricator, who told me how conservative the company’s balance sheet was, and how the small...

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Metal Fabrication Industry: A portrait in prose - TheFabricator.com

Metal Fabrication Industry: A portrait in prose

August 1, 2011

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Three books together paint a good picture of this industry. It’s a combination of technical knowhow, pragmatism, down-to-earth humor, and big-picture thinking.

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